Tuesday 20 February 2018

Fundraiser turns into close shave as good sports break record for charity

'Shave or dye' had a record breaking year
'Shave or dye' had a record breaking year
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

IT took 179 razors to break a world record in Dublin's Mansion House yesterday.

Niall Breslin, PJ Gallagher, Keith Barry and Dermot Bannon were among the celebrities lending a hand at the annual 'Shave or Dye' event – although Bressie was the only one of those to lose his hair.

For some it was a very personal effort to raise money and awareness for Irish Cancer Research.

Schoolboy Hughie Malloy (8), from Birr, Co Offaly, was one of the participants who received an extreme buzz cut. He was eager to get involved following the death of his aunt Annette Malloy.

"I was afraid to touch her when she was going through chemo and when she died I felt so bad," he said. "I wanted to raise money because no one should go through that."

Hughie was worried his new hairstyle would leave him a little chilly so brought the wig his aunt Annette wore during chemotherapy.

"I hope it keeps me warm. I put the wig on whenever I want to think of her," he added.

Since the charity campaign was launched in 2010, Today FM has raised over €6.35m for Irish cancer research.

The event encourages members of the public to chop off their hair or dye it a drastically different colour.

Terry Lennon, the mother-in-law of Ozzy Osbourne's eldest son Louis Osbourne, also took part in this year's Guinness world record breaker.

Lennon was there to support her terminally ill sister Fran McGrath (57) and found the experience overwhelming.

"I wasn't emotional beforehand but when they started shaving my head I thought of Fran and it hit me," she said.

A massive 179 'heads' and 179 'shavers' gathered in The Round Room in Dublin's Mansion House for the 'Most Heads Shaved Simultaneously' record.

"The previous record of 77 was achieved in New South Wales in May last year," official adjudicator, Anna Orford, said. "With 179 shaved heads here today it's fair to say we've smashed it. The atmosphere in the room was incredible."

Meabhdh Glover, and her three children, Roisin (14), Sadbh (15) and Olan (13), had attended the event in 2011 with their father Paul Glover.

Unfortunately, Mr Glover died of soft tissue sarcoma in June 2013, but his wife Meabhdh said the fundraiser had a profoundly positive impact on him.

"Being around other people in such an encouraging and warm environment really helped him," she said.

"I felt like I had to come this year. Paul was so strong and I want people to know life does go on after cancer."

Irish Independent

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